Sauerkraut – What to do with All of that Cabbage

making sauerkraut, cabbage, sauerkraut

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It’s that time of year – the garden is producing like crazy. I’ve been up to my eyeballs in zucchini, the eggplant is coming in like mad and for some reason the cabbage decided to ripen in August rather than September. The brought in two and I made a huge batch of stuffed cabbage for the freezer. It’s one of my favorite meals and it’s also very convenient to have it in the freezer for those nights when I don’t feel much like cooking. I also made a big batch of creamed cabbage which is a favorite of both of ours. Now it was time to make sauerkraut. This will be my third year making sauerkraut and we do enjoy it.

Table of Contents

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10 liter crock

3 large heads of cabbage
1/2 cup salt
brine if needed

Make sure your crock and the weights are very clean
Trim the cabbage keeping several large leaves to line the bottom and place on the top
Clean the cabbage leaves and cabbage
Place enough of the large leaves to cover the bottom
Cut the cabbage in half and core.

making sauerkraut, cabbage, sauerkraut
Cut each half in half again and slice very thinly.
Layer the sliced cabbage in the crock about 2″ tall and punch it down either with your fist or a sauerkraut tamper. Sprinkle some of the salt.

Do this over and over again, being sure to tamp down hard to start the breakdown of the cabbage for each layer.

When you just about reach the top layer on the rest of the large cabbage leaves, then the weights.
Cover and let sit for several hours.
Prepare a brine – you might or might not need it. 2 quarts of water to 1/2 cup salt.
Let the brine cool.

After the 2 -3 hours is up remove the crock lid and check the cabbage. It will have settled considerably.
If it has produced enough liquid to cover the weights you will not need to add any brine.

If it has not add enough of the brine to cover the weights.

Put the cover back on and fill the well to seal.
Keep the well full of water as the cabbage ferments.

It will bubble and burp for the first couple of weeks. This is a good thing.

Let the sauerkraut ferment for at least 6 weeks. This is just a minimum. The first year we made it we were excited to try it so we opened the crock at the six week mark. It was good but we could tell that it could be better. The next year we let it go considerably longer and the sauerkraut was better for it. I would say it went closer to three months.

Once I crack the crock I put a large bowl of it in the refrigerator for us to eat over the the next month or so and I can the rest.

Other Cabbage Recipes:

Pasta with Cabbage, Onions and Bacon

Apple Firebomb Venison Brats on Cabbage

Pickled Red Cabbage and Spaetlzle


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